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Old 08-05-2014, 06:24 AM   #1
Jordan Cotter
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I am sadly considering giving up clean/front squats

It's with a heavy heart I am considering this. I'm just so tired of having bruised and swollen collar bones.
I think it's a sign of me getting old. I used to do front squats and cleans with no problem, without even thinking about my form or keeping my elbows up. Now I do everything I can do keep my elbows up and have good form and it seems like the damage to my collar bones are unavoidable.

My collar bones are already larger than they used to be and I don't want them to look like Rich Froning's some day. His protrude pretty far. I'm guessing it's from years of what I'm talking about here.

I guess I just posted this for some sympathy or maybe for somebody to talk me out of it. I don't know...
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Old 08-05-2014, 08:27 AM   #2
Jesse DeMoss
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Re: I am sadly considering giving up clean/front squats

Have you tried lightly padding your bar? Nothing too thick to take away from your form, but enough to help. On one of my bars, I wrapped some cloth around and then athletic tape. It helps a little.
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Old 08-05-2014, 09:59 AM   #3
Struan Potter
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Re: I am sadly considering giving up clean/front squats

If the bar is mashing your collarbones, then you aren't creating enough of a shelf for the bar to rest on.

Set the elbows down and out a little, I'd say halfway between a press grip and parallel to the floor. Keep a full grip on the bar, and press up through the bar as you drive up out of the squat.
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Old 08-05-2014, 10:15 AM   #4
Matthew Swartz
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Re: I am sadly considering giving up clean/front squats

Grow some delts.
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"If your goal is to get stronger, stop counting and start eating, as you are wasting valuable time that could be put into food prep or the consuming of calories."
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Old 08-05-2014, 10:33 AM   #5
Richard Colon
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Re: I am sadly considering giving up clean/front squats

life does not end when you no longer decide to clean and/or front squat. They are just exercises. I am a big fan of them however, because I have rock solid delts. As others have said, get more swole and it usually isn't an issue but...

do them or don't do them. Either way its your call and doesn't matter in the end much since none of us make it out alive anyway.

Are you posting to get us to convince you otherwise?
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Old 08-05-2014, 12:00 PM   #6
Marshall Flagg
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Re: I am sadly considering giving up clean/front squats

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jordan Cotter View Post
It's with a heavy heart I am considering this. I'm just so tired of having bruised and swollen collar bones.
I think it's a sign of me getting old. I used to do front squats and cleans with no problem, without even thinking about my form or keeping my elbows up. Now I do everything I can do keep my elbows up and have good form and it seems like the damage to my collar bones are unavoidable.

My collar bones are already larger than they used to be and I don't want them to look like Rich Froning's some day. His protrude pretty far. I'm guessing it's from years of what I'm talking about here.

I guess I just posted this for some sympathy or maybe for somebody to talk me out of it. I don't know...
OK. Don't be a damn wuss and figure it out. Seriously, what has changed since you could attain a good front rack position?
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Old 08-05-2014, 05:07 PM   #7
Clint Harris
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Re: I am sadly considering giving up clean/front squats

You are in danger of having your man card revoked....

How old are you too ?

I get the odd bruising on my collar bones - more often than not it corresponds with power cleans once tired and I am not meeting the bar well. Foot work has usually gone out the window too. It's almost always associated with some form degradation - usually something like wide feet and leaning back (hips sink under the bar).
After heavy front squats there's a definite line across the front of me where the barbell sat, especially if I haven't done them in a while. But my collar bones are not growing or deforming because of it. I don't actually think there's much contact with them. Bone on barbell doesn't sound ideal.

So revisit your form and when this actually does happen.
Perhaps try to do some front squats where you rack it with straight arms out in front of you. No hands on the barbell so that you have to build a good shelf. (or cross arms).

So, quit crying and solve it. Or quit the exercise altogether.
Make sure you're "too old" is real thing and perhaps, if you are actually older, your bone density and/or testosterone has plummeted.
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Old 08-05-2014, 09:49 PM   #8
Jordan Cotter
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Re: I am sadly considering giving up clean/front squats

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jesse DeMoss View Post
Have you tried lightly padding your bar? Nothing too thick to take away from your form, but enough to help. On one of my bars, I wrapped some cloth around and then athletic tape. It helps a little.
I haven't tried that with this current situation, but I did try it when I was getting a bit of a hunchback from squats and it didn't work. So I just switched to low-bar squats instead.
But now that you mention it I may give it a shot.
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Old 08-05-2014, 09:55 PM   #9
Jordan Cotter
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Re: I am sadly considering giving up clean/front squats

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Originally Posted by Richard Colon View Post
Are you posting to get us to convince you otherwise?
Kind of. I really enjoy front squats and power cleans, but like I said, I'm just tired of bruised swollen collar bones. And when the collar bone gets swollen it gets bigger and becomes even more of a problem. I like for exercises to bulk up my muscles, not my bones.

I'd like to take Potter's advice if I understood it a little better. I understand the last part, but the last time I did front squats, I did them with pullups so my biceps were a bit swole and made it a little harder to get a full grip under the bar.
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Old 08-06-2014, 06:52 AM   #10
Jordan Cotter
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Re: I am sadly considering giving up clean/front squats

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Originally Posted by Clint Harris View Post
It's almost always associated with some form degradation - usually something like wide feet and leaning back (hips sink under the bar).
I am definitely guilty of wide feet when the weight gets heavy. I didn't think that was a sign of bad form until I noticed how narrow the feet of the athletes were and how deep they went on the speed clean ladder this year in the crossfit games. Then I really questioned my form...
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